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Zen Palate - Union Sq. need advice

Planning to take my neice, sister and another friend to Zen Palate tomorrow night (Sat) for my neice's birthday. I've looked at the "fine dining" menu and it looks good, but I see they don't take reservations. Is it worth 4 or 5 people showing up at 7 or 8 and expecting to get a table? Or are we better off in the cafe?

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  1. That's weird, when i went last year they took a reservation for 2 for me. Give them a ring and ask.

    p.s. i recommend the celestial tofu. it's delicious

    1. I've not been to the Zen Palate in Union Square. But if the food is anything like the absolutely horrible meal we had at the flagship location on 9th Avenue, I sincerely urge you to consider going elsewhere.

      If you're looking for vegetarian/vegan fine dining, Pure Food & Wine is close by, on Irving Pl. The signature "lasagna" is delicious. And the outdoor garden is gorgeous! They accept reservations.

      http://www.purefoodandwine.com

      2 Replies
      1. re: RGR

        I had a good meal when I ate upstairs in the union sq location, the menu is completely different than what they serve downstairs, it's family style. I haven't been to the 9th avenue location, but if it's what they serve at the cafe in union sq, then it's gross.

        1. re: lanadai

          The Union Sq location is better than 9th Ave. Granted, I've only been to 9th Ave once but was really disappointed so I've never returned. I've been many times to Union Sq and always eat upstairs - it's much nicer and quieter and I like the menu better than the one downstairs.

      2. I find it hard to believe they don't take reservations...where does it say that? You should definitely call them to double check.

        1. They take reservations, just make sure you specify upstairs.

          1. If you want vegan, why not Angelica on 12th St/2nd Ave? Zen Palate is bland, awful food IMO

            5 Replies
            1. re: kenito799

              I agree with you about Zen Palate, but think the same about Angelica's. What do you like there?

              1. re: rose water

                Have to agree about both Zen Palate AND Angelicas. Both bland and blech. Honestly, for vegan food, my choices are either Blossom or Pure Food and Wine - both rather on the expensive side, but GOOD, For midrange, hit Vegetarian Paradise 2 (great vegan banana split!)

                1. re: gaijingirl

                  The new Zen Palate on John Street is okay. Have not been to VP2 in a long time. VP3 on Mott was my favorite, sadly it has closed. Buddha Bodai is good (w/Chinatown ambience) and kosher. So many restaurants now offer a vegetarian choice why limit yourself? Unless, of course one has kosher or strict vegan requirements. I must try Pure Food and Wine, had not heard of it (thanks gaijingirl & RGR).

                2. re: rose water

                  i like that dense bread with tahini or whatever it is spread. i wouldn't choose to eat there, but I like some stuff they make with fresh greens and grains. I always feel incredibly wholesome and cleansed after I eat there but inevitably I eat some greasy meat later.

                  Veg Paradise (W Vill) has tasty food but a very plain dining room.

                  1. re: kenito799

                    If you want wholesome and cleansed, go to Sobaya, which is nearby and so much better than the bland Angelica's